Do hash browns belong in a fry up? English Breakfast Society calls for potato treat to be removed
Bacon, sausage, eggs and beans are undisputed staples of the full English breakfast, but one other ingredient has proven far more controversial.
Hash browns now find themselves fighting for a place on the plate as the English Breakfast Society says the fried potato treat does not ‘belong’ in a fry up – and it should be replaced with bubble and squeak.
Guise Bule de Missenden, founder of the English Breakfast Society, told The Times: ‘Somebody had to put their foot down. Otherwise we’ll find kebab meat in our English breakfast before long.
‘The hash brown – the reconstituted, tater-based fast food – was popularised by McDonald’s but somehow we now find it in our English breakfast.’
A YouGov poll in 2017 found that bacon is the most important part of a full English breakfast, revealing that that ingredient is the most important part of a fry up.
The research found it to be the most important part of a full English breakfast, with 89% of English people saying it would feature on their ideal plate, while only 60% thought that hash browns were crucial.
The YouGov poll identified the core ingredients in a decent Full English, with 60% saying that bacon is staple to their full English breakfast. As well as bacon, the other top ingredients include sausage (82%), toast (73%), beans (71%), fried egg (65%) and hash brown (60%)
The English Breakfast Society – dedicated to the history & tradition of the full English breakfast – says that the beloved fried potato does not ‘belong’ on a fry up (File image)
He continued: ‘We’re all about bringing back the bubble. That’s the reason we’re saying no to hash browns. Hashtag, bring back the bubble.’
The campaign group includes back bacon, eggs, British sausage, baked beans, fried tomato, fried mushrooms, black pudding, and fried and toasted bread among its common breakfast ingredients.
The society dedicated to the history and tradition of the full English breakfast wrote on Twitter that they are fighting ‘to give the people’ bubble and squeak back, which they have described as ‘a tastier, and more authentically British potato cake.’
In a separate Tweet, they wrote: ‘PSA: The frozen hash brown was popularised by McDonalds.
‘Serving them to customers in your English breakfast as a lazy replacement for bubble & squeak signals your lack of respect for the tradition, your customers, and your country. Do better.’
Their outcry comes following a YouGov poll which found that bacon is the most important part of a Full English breakfast.
The research revealed that it is single most important part of a full English breakfast, with 89% of English people saying it would feature on their ideal plate.
The survey also identified the core ingredients in a decent Full English, with six food items identified by more than half of people as being essential to their ideal breakfast.
As well as bacon, these include sausage (82%), toast (73%), beans (71%), fried egg (65%) and hash brown (60%).
However, Brits on social media have been left divided about whether or not the hash brown truly deserves a place on the plate.
Some defended the crunchy potato treat, while others wholeheartedly agreed with the campaign.
Hash browns however are an ingredient that many believe do not belong in a traditional English breakfast, the English Breakfast Society say, believing that the hallmark of a real English breakfast is locally or regionally sourced ingredients
One person wrote on Twitter: ‘I’m not sure it’s that simple. The problem you can’t ignore is that frozen hash browns, when cooked properly, are delicious and a perfect accompaniment. Most cafes will offer hash browns these days. Are they really a no?’
A second said: ‘I’m English and I like hash browns and hate bubble and squeak. There, I’ve said it. Out and proud!’
And a third put: ‘There are those of us who really don’t like B&S but do like a hash brown in any form. Frozen ones straight into the air fryer, job done. Can be used as a bean-break too for the ramekin deniers out there.’
While another defended bubble and squeak, saying: ‘Very true! Bubble and squeak should always appear as an option on an English breakfast menu.’
And one more person said they disliked the hash brown, writing: ‘A crime against the cooked breakfast.’
But another person was left totally confused as to why hash browns are even an option anyway, writing: ‘What’s weird is if you order hash browns at a restaurant in America you would never get one of these. You would get real diced potatoes.’
And despite the internet being divided over the hash brown row, the English Breakfast has been around for quite some time now.
The roots of this popular cuisine date back to the 14th or 15th century, with the Landed Gentry and their grand hunt breakfasts, before then being adopted by the middle and upper class Victorians, according to the English Breakfast Society.
Different variations of the greasy meal exist across the United Kingdom and Ireland, with different ingredients making up the staple breakfast.
Hash browns however are an ingredient that many believe do not belong in a traditional English breakfast, the English Breakfast Society say, believing that the hallmark of a real English breakfast is locally or regionally sourced ingredients.
They first started appearing on breakfast menus in New York City in the 1890s, and were later adapted into the UK breakfast – to the dislike of many.
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